Options to Greenify Corporate Events

Mon, Feb 27, 2012

6. Misc.

When it comes to running a greener business, you have so many options. You could start simply enough by installing recycle bins with every trash can, performing a waste assessment, and switching to CFL or LED lighting options. From there you could work to conserve energy and water, reduce pollution and waste in all aspects of your operation, and volunteer at or donate to eco-friendly causes. And if you really want to go all out, you could build LEED certified facilities and vow to make your entire supply chain, and your business in general (including vendors, partners, and clients) environmentally friendly. There are many, many ways to go green when it comes to business and all of them help the planet in a variety of ways. But when it comes to hosting corporate events you may be scratching your head over how to go green and still keep your guests happy. So here are a few options to consider.

The first thing to think about is the venue, and you might be surprised to learn that there are a lot of members of the hospitality industry looking to green up the works in an effort to conserve energy and water and cut their own utility costs (at the very least). So if you’re seeking a hotel ballroom or meeting space to host your event (and a hotel to host your out-of-town guests for a conference) then you should be able to find a venue that is suitable. Of course, not every town has such a space available, so you may want to look for a meeting place of the right size that boasts plenty of natural light, provides seating and other necessities (so they don’t have to be shipped in), and is willing to work with you to make the event as green as possible.

Next you’ll probably want to consider your options for food, and here you should be able to find green alternatives to the standard fare. If you’re hiring a catering company, for example, look for an eco-friendly service that offers a selection of local, organic foodstuffs from area farm co-ops. Or if you’re seeking a dining establishment to rent out for a large event, see if a vegetarian or vegan restaurant with ties to local growers can accommodate a group of your size. This will ensure healthier foods for your clients and colleagues as well as a way to reduce the carbon footprint of your event.

Finally, you should consider entertainment. Although you may be keen to hire a band, a DJ, or some other type of stage act, think for a moment about how much energy this type of entertainment will suck up. Instead, consider something off the beaten path like magicians, acrobats, singing waiters, or even fire dancers San Francisco to New York City. There are live performers of all stripes ready to entertain at corporate events, and as long as you hire someone within your city you’ll save not only on electricity, but also the pollution that comes from transporting A-listers from a remote location.

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